A Mangaluru bound express train on Saturday broke down twice due to faulty brakes and was delayed by seven-and-a-half hours, barely two hours after it started from Chennai Central.
The train, however, started towards Mangaluru after minor repairs. It was only after reaching the destination on the following morning, the technicians realised that the dust filter of the air pressure brake pipe of one of the coaches was not removed before connecting the coaches. “Non-removal of the dust filer was contributing to the variance while applying the brake. The loco pilot was forced to alter train operation in tune with the decline in brake performance,” revealed a railway source, disclosing that the train was delayed for 445 minutes (seven and a half hour) owing to the faulty brake in the coach, which was detached at Mangalore after completing its trip.
The problematic coach was returned after undergoing periodic overhauling at Perambur Carriage Work only recently. A top-level railway officer, who did not wish to be named, confirmed that the brake pressure failure and delay.
Significantly, railway sources confirmed that a similar failure led to SPAD (Signal passing at Danger) of Kharagpur bound express train from Villupuram in South Central Railway zone two years ago. “Thankfully, nothing undesirable other than delay was caused. Such brake failures or oversight led snags could lead to major eventualities, too,” another railway officer remarked on the condition of anonymity.